Have you ever been part of a conversation or hear someone brag about how they cheated death? Living life on the edge as some people would call it. Well I remember such a time, a memory that will stay with me for as long as I shall live.
a Few years ago I had some people over at my house for a social gathering, my sister was there and invited a friend of hers. We we’re having a “braai” as we would call it over here in South Africa, or better known as a barbecue in other parts of the world. It was during the summer if I remember correctly. South Africa has some of the best summers and it is sort of like a tradition to invite people over and have a few drinks while the meat is on the fire.
Everybody was talking to everybody. There were stories being told all around. But one particular conversation that was going on was with this friend of my sister’s that was bragging about how he used to speed on his motorcycle. I can’t remember the details to clearly, but I’m sure the story was about him racing home from a friends place, on his bike, intoxicated, and would make it home within the hour. I could remember, the trip he was talking about would take the average person in a car approximately an hour to drive, whereas he did it in under 20 minutes. All this time all I could think about was how stupid this guy is.
I know there’s a saying that goes “If it’s your time to go, it’s your time to go” I’m not too sure I always agree with this. Isn’t this almost the same as jumping in front of a car at speed and saying well, if it isn’t my time I won’t die? Anyway, back to this guys story. The night wen’t on and all of us had by now already had quite a few beverages to drink including this guy (my sisters friend). I knew that he stayed very close to us and luckily he literally had like a 2 minute drive to get home. I remember asking him if we could take him home (having quite a bit to drink that day) but he seemed fine and insisted on driving himself home that night. It was around 7-ish when most people started leaving.
I can still clearly remember the next morning waking up feeling groggy and with a slight headache, not getting nearly enough sleep. I can’t remember who sent me the message, but I do remember the numbing sensation that filled my entire body when I read that message on my phone. It said that the friend of my sisters got home safely after he left us but, later got in his car and drove somewhere, I can’t remember if anybody ever knew where he wen’t off to, but on his way back home, a truck had broken down next to the road and didn’t have any lights on. He drove right into the back of the truck at full speed, and later died in hospital.
Isn’t it ironic? How he was telling us about doing speeds of over 200kph on a motorcycle, with no protective gear and having had a few drinks, getting on the yellow line of the highway and flooring it. This he told us while smiling, almost as to say “Don’t try this at home kids” And hours later, he smashed into the back of a truck driving a car.
Whenever someone says “If it’s your time to go, it’s your time to go” I think about that night, about that guy.